Britain’s newest sub-10 man joins likes of Allyson Felix, David Weir and Renaud Lavillenie in French capital
After a bit of a break for the European Team Championships and various national champs, fans are treated to two lots of Diamond League action in quick succession.
Just two days after the excitement of Lausanne, the world’s premier series moves on to Paris for the eighth leg where among those in action is Britain’s newest sub-10 man, Chijindu Ujah, who makes his Diamond League debut in the 100m. All bar one of the entered athletes have personal bests of under 10 seconds, including Kim Collins, Nickel Ashmeade, Christophe Lemaitre and Richard Thompson – the second quickest man over the distance so far this year with 9.82. Panama’s Alonso Edward, who owns a 100m best of 10.02, drops down in distance having won the 200m in Lausanne where he clocked 19.84.
World champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce is set to take on three-time winner Allyson Felix in the 200m as USA’s Tori Bowie, who was a late withdrawal from the Lausanne 100m, is also entered. The 400m features the likes of Olympic gold medallist Sanya Richards-Ross and 2011 world champ Amantle Montsho, while Britain’s Tiffany Porter is up against a field including Olympic champion Sally Pearson in the 100m hurdles.
Competing on home soil, world record-holder Renaud Lavillenie is again in action in the pole vault against Britain’s Steve Lewis, the pair having finished first and eighth respectively in Lausanne. The Olympic champ is joined by his brother, Valentin Lavillenie, in the line up.
Another Brit who will face tough opposition is the in-form Niall Flannery in the 400m hurdles where this season’s world No.1 Javier Culson – victorious in Lausanne – and Olympic decathlon champion Ashton Eaton also go. In the non-Diamond League 110m hurdles event France’s world indoor silver medallist Pascal Martinot-Lagarde, who clocked a 13.06 personal best to win in Lausanne, is again due to race.
Britain’s Shara Proctor, who won the Diamond League long jump overall last year, will have her work cut out as she takes on world No.1 Tianna Bartoletta. Will Claye, clearly on form after his 17.75m at the US Championships, heads the triple jump line-up and will be joined by fellow American Christian Taylor, the Olympic champion.
After an improvement of his PB this year of nearly five metres, Egyptian javelin thrower Ihab Abdelrahman will be out to prove his 89.21m from Shanghai was no fluke, while Sandra Perkovic is among those in discus action, current world leader Joe Kovacs goes in the shot and Blanka Vlasic features in the high jump.
Kenya’s world 1500m champion Asbel Kiprop drops down in distance and goes over 800m, where he’ll be joined by the likes of Nijel Amos, Abubaker Kaki and Frenchman Pierre-Ambroise Bosse. Britain’s six-time Paralympic gold medallist David Weir is set to go head-to-head with Marcel Hug over 1500m, the Swiss five-time world T54 champion having claimed victory over the same distance in Lausanne.
Eilish McColgan will be looking to build on her British Championships win in the steeplechase as she forms part of a top-class field with the likes of Sofia Assefa, Hiwot Ayalew, Milcah Chemos and Emma Coburn, while the men’s 5000m includes in the line-up seven who have run below 13:00, including Galen Rupp, Hagos Gebrhiwet and Yenew Alamirew. Kenya’s world indoor 3000m champion Caleb Ndiku, the winner in Eugene, also races.
The women’s 1500m features five athletes who have dipped under the four minute mark in 2014 – Abeba Aregawi, Hellen Obiri, Sifan Hassan, Faith Kipyegon and Jenny Simpson. The top two from last weekend’s British Championships – Laura Weightman and Laura Muir – are also in action.
» Start lists for Saturday’s Meeting Areva in Paris can be found here, while the action is due to be televised live on the BBC Red Button from 7pm for fans in the UK